Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus (2 Timothy 1:13)
Sunday, October 30, 2005
Last year, I put up a post called "A Holy Day / A Wicked Day
" in which I contrasted the activities of Christians and non-Christians on Sunday, October 31st 2004. While Hallowe'en isn't on the Lord's Day this year, I thought it was important to reiterate my point, that is, if you're a Christian, YOU HAVE NO BUSINESS CELEBRATING HALLOWE'EN!.Consider carefully:
"All Saints' Day (or All Hallows' Day) was originally a pagan festival of the dead that began at sundown" (excerpt from The Folklore of World Holidays).
"In the 7th century, Pope Boniface IV introduced "All Saints' Day"to replace the pagan festival of the dead" (excerpt from The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits).
"Hallowe'en is derived from the rites of the Druids celebrating the day of Saman, when the lord of death called together the souls of the wicked who had died during the past year. The theme of the harvest, which runs through modern Hallowe'en celebrations, comes from both the old Druidic celebrations and the old Roman festivals in honour of Pomona, goddess of fruit, which were brought to Britain during the Roman occupation." (excerpt from Collier's Encyclopedia).And then, consider the Word of God:"And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them." (Ephesians 5:11)"Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's table, and of the table of devils." (2 Corinthians 10:20)"Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty." (2 Corinthians 6: 14-18)
Christian, be holy! Stay away from the wicked festival called Hallowe'en!
Friday Night Notes
Saturday, October 29, 2005
Lone Ranger lives to fight another day...
Indeed, I was "lone rangering" it tonight. My pastor and brother Laz were unable to make it out tonight, so I took a Gospel sign and went preaching all by my little lonesome. I preached and distributed Gospel literature for about 2.5 hours tonight. After that time, I was pretty cold and weary, so I called it a night.
All and all, tonight was a good night, in the sense that nothing terribly bad happened to me, and I did distribute a fair amount of Gospel literature, and even had some good conversations. While things didn't start off well (a man in a car pulled over next to me as I was making my way to my customary preaching spot, just to scream at me: "you stupid @#%$!"
), but things settled down after that. The mocking and the hatred wasn't too grievous.
I ran into two work-colleagues tonight. The one man walked by me quickly, giving me a quick gesture (clearly, not wanting to be seen with me during my preaching
), the other stopped and talked with me for several minutes. It wasn't the first time this "other" saw me preaching, but I was really surprised by his support. He kept saying: "it's good what you're doing Rand!" He even offered to watch over my Gospel sign so that I could get a warm coffee to warm myself. And this man is not a born-again believer! Anyway pray for this co-worker, that the Lord would richly bless him for his kindness towards me (and I can think of no greater blessing than to come to the knowledge of the Truth
Then there were these two young ladies... oh you should have seen these two. They were dressed provocatively and were distributing ads for a local dance club. I called right out at them:
"You are distributing condemnation, young ladies!"
Somewhat shocked, they walked over to me. One of them asserted:
"Well, I'm a Christian!"
"No, you're not," I replied.
Her jaw dropped. I got the usual "how-dare-you", and the "you-don't-really-know-me", and the "I-go-to-church-all-the-time"... etc... etc. I answered:"Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit." (Matthew 7:17)
I pointed at their clothe (or lack thereof), and I pointed at their pamphlets. Then I said:
They charged me with false accusations, they promoted their warp view that God would accept them because "he accepts everyone" (oh! the nonsense!
), they put up a pretty good somber and earnest act (and it was an act, they left giggling, and mocking me
), but in the end, I totally didn't lose my cool. I answered all their nonsense with sensible and logical arguments and in the end, while they left mocking, they didn't have a reasonable leg to stand on as far as the merits of their views. I thank the Holy Spirit for not only giving me the words, but giving me the right attitude in dealing with these ladies. Please pray for Brianna and Samantha, they are very lost, and need the Saviour.
I guess those were the highlights, because I can't think of anything else right now. I guess that means it's bedtime...
Take care, dear readers,
RandPS: I know I haven't been blogging much lately. The reason is that my wife has been sick this week, so I had to play Mr. Mom for the kids, and in the little free time I had from that task, I had to work on a sermon for Sunday night. Oh! and add to that my workday at the lab! It's been quite a week. I hope to be a bit more regular in my posting in the future. Later.
Friday Night Notes
Saturday, October 22, 2005
"And I said to myself... what a wicked word..."
Another three solid hours of street preaching done with both my pastor and brother Laz, and let me tell ya, it was COLD. Winter is well on its way up here in Canada. The downside of this is that standing on a street corner, the preacher has a tendency of... well... freezing! The upside, of course, is that the women who are going to bars, are wearing far more clothing.
While there most certainly wasn't any signs of revival tonight, the Lord did bless us by keeping us safe from harm, and we did share the Gospel message with a great number of people. Here are the highlights:The Good:-->
I had a conversation with a man named Hugo. He came to me with the incredibly unoriginal philosophy: "Christianity, Islam, Buddhism... etc... in the end, it's all the same thing." I told him that the only reason he believed that was because he knew absolutely nothing of the teachings of each faith. I quoted John 14:6: "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
"What room is there for Mohammed's way or Buddha's way when you consider that verse, my friend?" I inquired.
He took my correction rather well and accepted a Gospel tract, so please pray that the Lord would start a work in Hugo's life.-->
Two young ladies came by as I was preaching. They were both obviously drunk. One of them asked me:
"Can you tell us where we could find a good bar?"
"There is no such thing as a "good" bar," I answered.
One of the ladies just mocked me, but the other became quite earnest. She started reading my Gospel sign:"He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him." (John 3:36)
"The wrath abides on you tonight young lady, because you are in a wicked way, the way of drunkeness," I said.
Her mocking friend eventually coaxed her into walking away, but I could tell the Scriptures had had an effect on her. Please pray that this young lady wake up tomorrow thinking about the words she read and heard.The Bad:-->
A older couple walked by me tonight as I was preaching. The man exclaimed: "GET A JOB!" A rather ignorant comment, considering I had just finished a 40-hour work week.-->
A young lady walked up to me and told me that she wasn't concerned about going to Heaven when she died because, as far as she was concerned, she was already in Heaven. I asked her:
"How many people died in the various Hurricanes in the US and Mexico? How many have died in Pakistan where the earthquake hit? How many people are dying of AIDS in Africa? Quite the 'heaven' you are living in my dear."
Unable to respond, she walked away and gave money to a drunk beggar who was sitting on the sidewalk a few yards away. She couldn't come to God by the Gospel, so she had decided that she was going to find "another way" to justification; that is, justification by works. Funny, how the more things change, the more they remain the same.The Incredibly Sad:
My "incredibly sad" moment tonight comes from a young man who is probably my brother-in-the-Lord. As I mentioned before, there is another group of street preachers who present the Gospel on Friday nights. We don't have any association with them because their soteriology is terrible.
Anyway, a young man who was with this "other group" walked up to brother Laz and I as we were distributing Bible literature.
"Why do you carry around a sign with a Bible verse on it?" he inquired.
"So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God
," I answered.
"Yes, but do people take you seriously?" he pressed on.
"As seriously as they take the Scriptures, and that varies a lot from person to person," I answered.
The conversation didn't last too long after that, and it was a good thing, because I was finding all of this rather aggravating. Can you imagine, a born-again saint, doing evangelism, unable to see the merit of putting a verse from the Word of God before the people's eyes??? This is the effect of New Evangelicalism
on many of today's Christians I'm afraid. "Don't rock the boat; don't say anything that might offend unbelievers; only speak of God's grace and love; don't get too doctrinal."
How utterly sad.
And that's the notes for tonight... I'm tired, and it's time for bed. Good night dear readers.
Happy Birthday To Me!
Thursday, October 20, 2005
one more year, closer to eternity...
The old odometer just clicked, adding another year to the count. I'm glad to report that I still don't feel old. Sure my back is causing me some problems, my hair is disappearing, and I'm always tired, but other than that, I feel quite youthful (LOL)
Seriously though, I really want to thank the Lord for an amazing life so far. I have never run out of anything, all my years have been filled with laughter and joy, and God's grace towards me has truly abounded.
Looking forward to seeing what the Lord will have for me this year,
Time Travel - Expedition # 2
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
Lightning and Moonshadows...(if you don't know what this is... check out Expedition # 1)'97
It was at the end of what had become "our routine walk". A routine that started when I tried to explain to Twinklemoose that it probably wasn't a good idea for she and I to spend too much time together. You see, I was moving away, and I didn't think Twink cared enough for me to commit to a serious relationship, and I didn't want to make my departure any harder than it had to be. Twink corrected my assumption (something I thank the Lord for every day)
A week after that walk, we both agreed to wait until I found work, and then we'd get ENGAGED! (but that's an entirely different story)
Our walk brought us to a lovely bay where we would usually have a seat on a park bench, or some big rock by the side of the water, and we would snuggle together and have some small talk. On this particular night, we made our way to the large rocks at the edge to the water. Two wonders of nature (God's nature)
, awaited us there.
The first was the moon. The brightness of the moon that night was at a level I had never seen before. We actually had shadows!!! We jumped and danced on the rocks, watching our moonshadows follow our every action. And then there was the flickering light on the waves... like a million fireflies dancing on the water.
And then the second wonder: off on the horizon, a storm was forming. Straight ahead, over the bay, thick clouds which probably would have been invisible in the night sky had it not been for the brightness of the moonlight. At every 5 seconds, an amazing display of lightning would shoot out of the clouds, lighting even further the night sky.
The combination of the moonlight and the storm's lightning... it was like the Lord Himself was giving my future fiancee and I a natural fireworks display.
Figuring that this night was something really special, I reached into my pocket hoping I hadn't removed the diamond ring I had just bought for her, but alas, I had locked it up in my desk before going out that night (the proposal came a couple of weeks later)
. The storm was practically over us when we decided that it would be a good idea to head back home. We ran to stay ahead of the rain, but the downpour caught up to us when we were a few yards away from Twinkle's apartment.
Soaked and laughing hysterically, we finally made it to the front lobby where Twink turned around to say goodnight. The look she gave me, and the way she looked... well... I think the exact phrase that came into my mind was: "Whoa! what a babe!" I really wanted to kiss her at this point, but we had promised each other that we wouldn't kiss until we were officially engaged, so I said goodnight and ran back outside to catch the bus back to my apartment.
Friday Night Notes
Saturday, October 15, 2005
what a busy night...
I apologize for being late with my notes, things, as you will read, were quite busy.8pm-11pm:
Brother Laz and I went out to our usual spot to preach the Gospel. All and all, it was a good night. Brother Laz had a great conversation with a young man, and there is hope we will see him tomorrow at the Lord's Day service. The Lord didn't provide me with such a blessing, but I did get some kind words from some of my hearers (which was nice... it doesn't happen much during our Friday night evangelism)
.Funny moment of the night:
as I was walking with one of our Gospel signs, a man passed by me and muttered: "that's one hell
of a sign..."Gratifying moment of the night:
I don't know if my heart was right when I did this, but I have to tell you, I REALLY ENJOYED DOING IT! Three women dressed like prostitutes walked by Brother Laz. He offered them a Gospel tract, and they reacted with scorn and mockery. I was preaching when all this was going on, and I have to tell you, seeing how those jezebels were treating my brother-in-the-Lord really, really irked me. So, I took aim. I stopped preaching my message and started preaching against their wickedness. "You laugh now ladies, but they day will come when you will tremble before God," I exclaimed. You should have seen their shocked faces.11pm-4am:
No, I wasn't in bed.
I was at work. We had a scheduled power outage so I had to make my way in to make sure that our new UPS systems responded right. For those of you who don't know what a UPS is, the letters stand for Uninterruptible Power Supplies, which is fancy words for battery units.
Sadly, when the power went out, the UPS batteries failed miserably and spikes in the power supply blew one of our computers up. I spent the next 2 hours trying to fix things up, but failed miserably.4am-6am:
Still not in bed.
I'm in the bathroom. Sick to my stomach. Seems like I caught a nasty bug.
And that's the notes!
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
It's always bothered me. The very concept of a soul who is saved by the grace of God, who is PRESENTLY seated in heavenly places in Christ Jesus, who is a partaker of the heavenly gift, who has the indwelling of the Holy Spirit... depressed? And for some, so depressed that they are daily living on antidepressant drugs like Prozac, Zoloft and Effexor.
How can this possibly be?
Consider this excerpt from C.H. Spurgeon's Morning and Evening devotional
"The Holy Spirit consoles, but Christ is the consolation. If we may use the figure, the Holy Spirit is the Physician, but Jesus is the medicine. He heals the wound, but it is by applying the holy ointment of Christ’s name and grace. He takes not of his own things, but of the things of Christ. So if we give to the Holy Spirit the Greek name of Paraclete, as we sometimes do, then our heart confers on our blessed Lord Jesus the title of Paraclesis. If the one be the Comforter, the other is the Comfort. Now, with such rich provision for his need, why should the Christian be sad and desponding? The Holy Spirit has graciously engaged to be thy Comforter: dost thou imagine, O thou weak and trembling believer, that he will be negligent of his sacred trust? Canst thou suppose that he has undertaken what he cannot or will not perform? If it be his especial work to strengthen thee, and to comfort thee, dost thou suppose he has forgotten his business, or that he will fail in the loving office which he sustains towards thee? Nay, think not so hardly of the tender and blessed Spirit whose name is "the Comforter." He delights to give the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. Trust thou in him, and he will surely comfort thee till the house of mourning is closed for ever, and the marriage feast has begun."
There really is no need for me to add another word. Pastor Spurgeon put well and clear enough. Christian, if you are today on antidepressants, read that above quote again and answer the questions.
Take care and God bless,
Sunday, October 09, 2005
to whom are you thankful???
As I mentioned in my last post, today is my country's Thanksgiving weekend. In the comment box
associated to that post, my good friend and brother-in-the-Lord, Pete
"Happy Thanksgiving Rand and family! Ours in next month, but I know not whom most are thankful to."
This is an interesting and worthy point, one that I felt was worthy of further discussion. Most, in the U.S. and in Canada, couldn't care less about God. That is a fact. They disregard His commandments, they have no desire to serve Him, or know Him for that matter. They take His name in vain, they rarely (if ever)
express any kind of thankfulness for God's faithful providence, rather they speak of a "mother nature" or "mother earth". Most brush off the Lord and cling to the nonsense of the "Big Bang" theory and the theory of Evolution. This begs the question:Who are you, unbeliever, thankful to?
Are you thankful to cosmic energy? To primordial goo which life, supposedly came from? Are you thankful to entropy? Are you thankful at all?
I suppose the last question is the most relevant. Personally, I believe that for most, thanksgiving is just another word for "long weekend". The Bible plainly teaches that unbelievers are NOT characterized by thankfulness:"Because that, when they (unbelievers) knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened." (Romans 1:21)
On the other hand, Christians are to be known by their thankfulness:"Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Ephesians 5:20)"And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful." (Colossians 3:15)
So I leave the question to you unbeliever... and I know many who do not belong to Christ are reading this... are you thankful to God? Truly?
As for me, on this Thanksgiving, I give thanks to my God for...
-my wife and all three of my beautiful children
-my church family who are blessing to me and a source of comfort in this wicked world
-my parents and my sister, with whom the Lord has given wonderful peace and unity
-my work (yes... my work!)
, for it presents me with interesting challenges and it provides well for my family.
-all of His providence... the food, the house, the riches, the freedoms and liberty... etc... etc... (of all the peoples of the Earth, surely us Canadians are most blest, as far as earthly blessings are concerned)
-all of God's spiritual providence... for the church fellowship he has directed me to, for the abundance of Bibles and study material that is available to me
The list could go on and on... but in summary, I thank the Lord my God for everything He has provided for me, and His continued care and affection for me, a sinner saved by His wonderful grace!
Friday Night... Rain!
Saturday, October 08, 2005
No "notes" tonight from street preaching, we were rained out. While it is a shame that the Gospel wasn't preached in the marketplace tonight, I consider the rain tonight as a gift from the Lord. The fact of the matter is... I'M EXHAUSTED.
Work, this week, has been incredibly busy. I've easily worked 12-16 hours in overtime, and some of my tasks were frustrating and difficult. That being said, I managed to get all that was required of me done, and done well (Praise God!)
So with the night off from street preaching, my wife and I had a "date". We got a babysitter went out for dinner. We had a good time. I now plan to devote my long weekend (it's Thanksgiving weekend here in Canada)
to my family, who haven't seen much of me this last few days.
To all my fellow Canadian readers: Happy Thanksgiving!
Too Busy To Blog!
Thursday, October 06, 2005
work... work... work...
I would like to apologize for the lack of blogging, work has been CRAZY!!! I've been working late, and when I've actually made it home in reasonable time, it's been due to me bringing some of my work home.
Anyway, I'm alive and well, and hope to be back to blogging in the next few days. In the meantime, check out my youngest playing with the timeless, toddler favorite... POTS
Monday, October 03, 2005
I just added another audio-sermon to the list, this one
was preached by "yours truly" last week. I thought I'd mention it since some of it's content may help you understand, dear readers, why I have such strict rules against debates (in the comment box or in e-mail form).
Anyway, Twinklemoose said it was "one of my better ones", so if you have the time, give my message a click
Friday Night Notes
Saturday, October 01, 2005
dealt with the moon-god tonight...
Another Friday night, another 3 hours of street preaching. With the arrival of October, comes much colder weather, so the marketplace isn't as busy. That isn't to say that there is no one there, no, there are plenty of people, just not as many as in the summertime.
Plenty of one-on-one conversations tonight, and for some strange reason, most of the people I dealt with tonight were serious Muslims. Usually Muslims avoid me like the plague when they see the Gospel signs, but tonight, they seemed to be attracted by them. All the conversations were respectful and kind, though the stumbling block remained: the Deity of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
This one Muslim man in particular... I spoke with him for a solid hour. I usually try to break off from long discussions during our time of evangelism, but this fellow really wanted to know what I was all about, and of course, show me the merits of Islam. Though he steadfastly held to the teachings of the Qu'ran, I think my faithfulness and testimony shook him. He also was taken aback by my rejection of Romanism; sadly, when most Muslims think Christianity, they think of the Vatican. Graven images, Mary "queen of heaven", purgatory... he was really surprised to hear me say I rejected all of these because the Bible did NOT teach it. Several times he said:"I never met a Christian like you before."
Anyway, he kept and promised to read the Bible tract I gave him, so please pray that this man will read the literature and come to one of our meetings (would I ever be pleased to this this man come to the knowledge of the Truth!)
I also dealt with a 50-year-old man who, at first, just wanted to mock me, but mid-way in our conversation, he became somewhat more respectful. His main observation was:"Man! to be doing what you are doing... you must be very convinced!"
I told him that I was convinced because the Lord had saved me, but he replied:"Ah! so you need that crutch in your life huh. It's okay, most people need something like that."
Funny, he was feeling sorry for me, and I was feeling sorry for him. Fifty years of life, blind to the Truth and wasting his time in ungodliness and vanity in the marketplace.
Well, it's very late, and it's been quite a week (work has been down right exhausting). Good night dear readers, I'm off to bed...